Last week, we met Grant and Marie (and toddler) ever-so-slightly off-Buford Highway for one of our frequent eat-up meet-ups, this time with Ashley, Steve and his sister Laura (who last dined with us at Nam Phuong) in tow.

Batavia Indonesian food off-Buford Highway in Doraville

In addition to being a brightly colored and nicely appointed restaurant, Batavia is also a small grocery store. Marie and I had a good time perusing the goods after we put in our orders. I have a little comparison shopping to do before I can say for sure, but I am thinking this may become my go-to spot for coconut cream.

Batavia Indonesian restaurant and grocery store

Batavia Indonesian restaurant and grocery store

Thanks to Marie and Grant’s helpful knowledge of indonesian fare, they ordered sans menu, getting some krupuk udang (shrimp crackers) to get us started off right.

Krupuk udang - indonesian shrimp crackers

Krupuk udang – shrimp crackers.

After only brief deliberation, Adam and I ordered the sambal goreng udang/pete and the nasi padang. We owe Grant for the nasi padang, since he asked about the dish, which doesn’t have a description on the menu. The description sounded so good we changed plans on the spot.

As is typical in our BuHi experiences, we were warned about the spiciness of the sambal goreng, but we forged ahead as we are wont to do. Ohhhhh lawdy. This dish was delicious but it nearly killed me. It has a flavorful slow burn that lasts a long time and builds up cumulatively as you continue to eat. By the time I was 2/3rds of the way through my half of the entree, I had long-since blown out my sinuses, my ears were ringing and I could hear my blood pounding in them, and my head felt strangely light – as if it were coming off of my shoulders.

Sambal goreng udang and pete

Sambal goreng udang and pete – Sauteed shrimp and sator in spicy sauce. $7.49

Despite being armed with two Epi pens, I opted to lay down the fork… something practically unheard of for me. I was worried that the spiciness was masking an allergic reaction to the sator, which I had never tried before. Nope, it was just so incredibly spicy that I was practically having an out-of-body experience. Adam made it through his half but he paid for it later, if you know what I mean…

At Batavia - after I recovered

After I recovered enough to take a photo… still not quite myself.

In short, believe them when they say it’s hot. But it’s also quite delicious, so if you’re brave then go for it! I would do it again paired with an extra side of rice, and with an avocado shake at the ready.

Batavia avocado shake

This avocado shake helped cool things down.

Our other dish also had some kick. Some of the same red sauce from the sambal goreng was on the egg. I was so out of it by the time I hit this dish that I barely touched my half, only drinking the delicious curry soup in the restaurant.

Batavia nasi padang

Nasi padang – Rice with veggies, a spicy egg, spiced chicken, and beef rendang. (And soup.) Grant got one, too. $6.99

This delicious soup came with our nasi padang

This delicious curry soup with greens came with our nasi padang.

I opted to suck on my avocado shake the rest of the time, get a to-go box, and eat the rest of the leftovers at home the next day. To perk up the rice, I fried it and mixed in the rest of the ingredients. It still set my head ablaze, though not nearly as badly. Yum!

Ashley's bakmi ayam

Ashley’s bakmi ayam – steamed noodles, chicken, vegetables, meat and other delicious things. A meatball soup came on the side. $6.49

Ashley got the bakmi ayam, a delicious-looking noodle bowl with accompanying soup. Here are her thoughts on her meal and Batavia in general:

“It’s a surprising little gem considering it’s tucked away down Shallowford. The prices were nice and low and the portions were incredible (I got three portions out of mine)! The various noodle dishes I tasted were all good with their own slight distinctions. The service was kind, though spotty. Overall, I’d say 3.5 stars.”

Laura's gwetiau goreng

Laura’s gwetiau goreng – fried flat noodles with choice of chicken, shrimp, pork or combination. $5.99

I somehow don’t have a photo of Stephen’s satay plate. Called sate on the menu, the plate came with chicken, pork, or lamb and was $7.49. Here are Stephen’s thoughts: “The service felt scattered and unfocused, but the food was well-priced and was of reasonably high quality. Overall, I would give it 3.5 stars.”

Grant's tahu kacang

Grant’s tahu kacang – fried tofu and peanut sauce. $2.49

Marie's nasi goreng – indonesian fried rice.

Marie’s nasi goreng – indonesian fried rice.

Everyone seemed to enjoy their food and have a good time with good conversation. The staff definitely noticed that Adam and I nearly expired whilst eating their food, and we earned a friendly jab from our server for being foolhardy white folks out of our depth. But that’s okay, I’d do it again. Besides, there was plenty on the menu that isn’t as fiery. If you’ve never been to Batavia, I definitely recommend swinging by! 4 stars!

Do also check out Grant’s wonderful telling of the Marie, Let’s Eat perspective on this trip!

3640 Shallowford Rd
Atlanta, GA 30340

Batavia on Urbanspoon


Nerd. Foodie. Gamer. Homecook. Perpetual planner. Gardener. Aspiring homesteader. Direct response graphic designer. I use too many damn commas.

9 thoughts on “Batavia

  1. Wow – that’s even looks spicy… BTW – if you eat enough Sator (Pete) it can stay in your system for a few days – noticeable in “bodily byproducts” :-).

    How would you compare Batavia to Tempoe Doeloe?

    • Hmmm. That’s a tough question, since we’ve only had one meal at each place so far. The dishes we got at each restaurant were very different, too, so no direct comparisons there either. Batavia is definitely nicer to sit and eat at with company. I’m guessing Tempo Doeloe’s strong suit is the lunch special we still haven’t gotten around to. We need to do more eating, but at the moment I am leaning to Batavia as the more highly-recommended of the two.

  2. Epi pens during a meal, that’s what I call hardcore. Avocado shakes are delicious despite the sound. Glad you tried one. Food sounds spicy and delicious. I ate something so spicy once, it paralyzed my facial muscles and then they started to twitch. Not to mention the Afterburn.

    • Hahaha, the afterburn… I definitely did not avoid that experience after this meal. Oh well!
      But paralysis?! Now THAT is hardcore.

  3. Hi! I LOVE your blog! I have also experienced the wonderful experiences of buford highway ! It is the best place to explore ! I totally appreciate your information about the diff restaurants! I have been to and love many of the places – and love to read about different menu items I had not thought to order ! Today I went to Batavia- I was so excited to try something new ! We got everything you had ordered ! We were cautious and added lots of rice to play down the spice – however we did get lots of the spice blend on the side! We also ordered the spicy eggplant from the steam bar – so so good! The collards and lots of the choices on the steam bar looked good enough to try– (not the very dried fish or meat) we will definitely explore the different food choices- esp for 3 for 6$ I also want to try the kabobs – for 1$ . ( curious how they compare to the place near Quickly !) I know we will try every restaurant you have blogged about! I would eat Buford Hwy food more than any other place in atl! Thank you, thank you , thank you ! 🙂

    • Bronwyn, thank you for your very sweet message! I am so glad you enjoy the blog! And thank you for sharing your experience at Batavia – I haven’t been when the steam bar is open yet, but I will have to go try it now, it sounds great!

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